Broker Willis and professional services company Towers Watson have agreed to combine in an all-stock merger of equals transaction to form Willis Towers Watson.
Based on closing prices of common shares on June 29, the companies said the implied equity value was approximately $18 billion. The deal will see Willis shareholders take 50.1 percent of the company and Towers Watson shareholders take 49.9 percent.
The combined company will have approximately 39,000 employees in over 120 countries, and pro forma revenue of approximately $8.2 billion.
John Haley, chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) of Towers Watson, said: “This is a tremendous combination of two highly compatible companies with complementary strategic priorities, product and service offerings, and geographies that we expect to deliver significant value for both sets of shareholders.
“We see numerous opportunities to enhance our growth profile by offering integrated solutions that leverage Willis’ global distribution network and superb risk advisory and re/insurance broking capabilities to deliver a more robust set of analytics and product solutions across a broader client base, including accelerating penetration of our Exchange Solutions platform into the fast growing middle-market."
Dominic Casserley, Willis CEO, added: “These are two companies with world-class brands and shared values. The rationale for the merger is powerful – at one stroke, the combination fast-tracks each company’s growth strategy and offers a truly compelling value proposition to our clients.
“Together we will help our clients achieve superior performance through effective risk, people and financial management. We will advise over 80 percent of the world’s top-1000 companies, as well as having a significant presence with mid-market and smaller employers around the world.”
Willis, Towers Watson, Mergers & Acquisitions, Europe, Bermuda